Weavering Founder Must Face Trial, Judge Rules

Mar 17 2014 | 3:43am ET

Accused hedge fund fraudster Magnus Peterson won’t be getting off on at least one technicality.

The founder of collapsed hedge fund Weavering Capital has lost his abuse of process claim against the U.K. Serious Fraud Office. Peterson, who is accused of defrauding investors of US$600 million, argued that the SFO improperly reopened its case against him. But, in spite of some concerns, Justice Andrew Smith said Peterson’s trial should proceed.

The SFO closed its initial probe into Weavering in 2011, two years after it collapsed. But the following year, Peterson was found liable for fraud in a London civil case, leading the SFO to reopen its investigation.

Peterson complained that the move was improper, given the submissions he made in the civil case, and because the case was not officially accepted by then-SFO director Richard Alderman. Smith acknowledged that it was “surprising and disturbing” that Alderman’s delegation of his responsibility to officially accept cases to a deputy “came in so casually that it was not even recorded,” but that it was valid all the same.

Peterson’s trial is set to begin in October.

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